Theology and Spirituality in Counseling
Dr. Albert Smith
November 26, 2012
The authors, Henry Cloud and John Townsend (1999), write Boundaries in Marriage to help people understand choices that either build or destroy loving relationships. The authors say that marriage is about love. Love needs to be aided by personal freedom and responsibility for love to flourish the relationship to be healthy (Henry and Townsend, 1999, p. 9). In order to accomplish this goal, the authors believe that there needs to be boundaries in marriage. Boundaries are simply property lines that describe where the responsibility of one ends and the responsibility of the other begins. Henry and Townsend (1999) believe that boundaries assist love to behave freely in relationships. Boundaries keep each other accountable to performing personal responsibilities because they define where one person’s responsibilities end and the other’s begin. Boundaries foster true freedom, and lastly, boundaries provide safety. Henry and Townsend (1999), in chapter two of their book, explain ten laws of boundaries in marriage. These are principles that can be applied in marriages. Law one is the law of sowing and reaping. Sin has consequences both in relations and in the daily functions. This law states that one's conduct has consequences. The second law is the law of responsibility. It means that each partner needs to own his own actions. Be responsible to each other. The third law, the law of power, says that a partner does not have power over everything in marriage. A spouse has no power to change the partner's attitude and actions but has power to confess and repent of his wrongdoing. The law of respect is the fourth law. This is doing unto others what you want others to do unto you. The fifth law is the law of motivation. This law says, "we...